No matter where you live, everyone can and should be composting, as I talked about in the previous post. Of course, not all of us can be running a large-scale, 50-tonne windrow operation out of our backyard or tiny apartment balcony, but there are alternatives for practically every lifestyle. Here are three different ways to compost your organic waste, from easy to hard and cheap to a little more pricey.
1. Start your own compost:
Effort: 7/10 - 10/10
Cost: 0/10 - 10/10
Okay so this option could be an entire article in itself (and probably will be) because there are so many different ways to compost. A good rule of thumb is that the easier the composting operation, the more it will cost or the longer it will take. You could literally dump all your green waste in a pile in the backyard and with a few turns a month it would eventually be fully decomposed. Or you could drop around $300-$500 on something like the HotBin and pretty much all you do is pop your food waste in and get that sweet, sweet organic fertiliser out.
Starting your own composting operation is kind of what I imagine raising kids is like. There’s a million ways to do it and the end product is typically a function of how much money or time you spend on it. To fully do them justice, I’ll be doing an entire post on different composting operations and I’ll be sure to include even more off-putting comparisons between it and rearing children.
2. Find a neighbour or local community compost hub or garden
Composting is way more common than people realise and practically everywhere has some kind of community hub that allows for organic waste drop off. These are usually managed by the city council but private and not-for-profit operations are increasingly popping up. Practically every suburb in the Brisbane area has one and they’re always happy to take drop-offs. You can find your local council hub here, but there’s heaps of others out there.
Another great way to get your organic waste composted without having to do the hard yards yourself is finding a local neighbour who already has their own operation. Unless they’re that creepy old man who steals your mail at 2:00am, most friendly neighbourhood composters are more than happy to take others’ waste because it ultimately means more organic fertiliser for them.
To make it even simpler, the Australian ShareWaste allows you to connect with compost “hosts”, in an AirBnB-like platform. You message your nearest one, drop off your waste with them and that’s it!
3. Commercial organic waste collection
Last but not least is for the laziest environmentalists out there. The longest, most committed relationship you have is with your Netflix account so the idea of starting your own compost operation is a little bit daunting, as is going out of your way to drop off your waste or to socialise with neighbours.
There’s no shame in this option and it's great for those with a super busy lifestyle and limited access to any other composting operations. For businesses, schools, hospitals and other establishments, this is also the best way to manage your organic waste in a sustainable way.
All major waste management providers offer organic waste collection and number of smaller companies have also started operating. Some of these offered in the Brisbane area can be found at this super handy resource.
Final little hint for while you’re collecting your kitchen waste. It’s hot in Australia, especially in summer, especially with all this global warming. Keep your kitchen waste in a sealed container in the freezer or fridge. This basically slows or stops decomposition, and any smells that could also come along, which allows you to fully fill your container before needing to take it out!
These are three simple ways absolutely anyone can start composting their organic waste, no matter where you live. Make sure to keep up-to-date on all things compost by following EarthOffset on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn.